The venue is probably one of the most important elements in event planning. Whether you’re hosting a wedding, a corporate convention, a birthday party, or a just-because gathering, your venue sets the mood and theme of your event. That’s why it’s important to have everything down pat.
When scouting for a venue, it’s natural to have a dozen of questions. Most people are keen to ask about the capacity and prices, but that’s just among the factors you should consider. So, how can you know if a particular venue is the right fit for your event? For us, it’s all about asking the right questions.
This blog will discuss all the questions you should ask the event space coordinators. These inquiries will set you in the right direction when choosing the best possible venue for your event. More than anything, it will also help you figure out the logistical aspects of making your event a success.
4 Essential Questions You Should Never Forget
Right now, you might be shopping around venues and touring event spaces. The pressure might be weighing down on you because all you want is the best. It might feel a bit (or a lot) overwhelming but take it easy. Remember these three essential questions to make sure you’re not wasting your precious time.
1. Is the venue available on my event’s date(s)?
This is the MOST important thing to ask. Always check for availability first. If you already have a date set, availability matters most—especially if your event is coming up soon. You can call in to inform the event space managers of your interest in booking the venue.
Most event space rentals in San Francisco usually advertise promotions and deals online, so check their website. Asking for available dates ensures you’re not wasting your time visiting and touring event spaces.
Pro tip: Having a flexible event date can help you get the best deals. Most event space rentals want to fully book their venue, so they’re more than willing to give you a bargain if you’re flexible on their availability.
2. How many attendees/guests can the venue accommodate?
While this might seem like a basic and obvious question, most inexperienced event planners fail to recognize the complexity of event hosting. A lot of venues can accommodate 100 people, but they may come with certain limitations.
Restrictions, such as room layout and service style, can significantly influence a venue’s capacity. For example, if you envision a standing-room-only style, you can easily fit 100 people in a smaller venue. However, if you plan to host a plated dinner with over 150 guests, you might need a bigger space.
This only means that a venue capacity isn’t also set in stone. Whether you’re hosting a passed hors d’oeuvres, a booth expo, or a conference, it’s important to be clear on your venue’s desired layout.
Pro tip: After you’ve called in and checked for availability, you can browse through the event space’s catalog to see if they’ve hosted similar events like yours. This gives you a better overview and idea of how they can handle your event.
3. What are your rates and inclusions?
It’s time to ask for rates! Most people tend to ask for the pricing first. However, it’s also best to gather essential information about the venue. This sets you better to bargain and ask for the best deals.
Whenever you ask for the price, be keen on the service inclusions that come with that. Some event spaces only offer the space and nothing more. This gives you more freedom to choose a provider for your catering service, lights and sounds, decorations, and logistics.
On the other hand, some event rentals in San Francisco cover just about everything for you. They have their teams to help you every step of the way.
Pro tip: If you want hassle-free event planning, you can opt-in to event space rentals with comprehensive packages. Just be reminded that you might have less control and freedom to do things.
4. What are the payment terms and cancellation policy?
Never SKIMP on asking this question. Some people just tend to brush this off, thinking that this might not matter to them. However, knowing the payment terms and cancellation policy puts you in the best situation when unprecedented situations happen.
Take the case of the pandemic; most people plan their events not thinking that social gatherings will be banned for the rest of 2020. Imagine the horror of those event planners who signed contracts with non-refundable deposits. This only highlights the importance of knowing the payment terms and cancellation policies.
Ask how the payments are handled and be privy to the cancellation policy. You never know what might happen before your event. While nobody ever wants to cancel, unexpected incidents can happen anytime. It’s best to guarantee that everyone is on the same page to avoid any potential problems in the future.
Considering the Details
Can you suggest vendors/service providers?
If you’re keen on booking just the venue while handling all the other elements of the event, finding resources can be tricky. You might spend most of your time scouring for the best vendors. But, there might be a quick solution.
Don’t be shy to ask your event space managers about vendors and service providers they recommend. They usually have a list of service providers to help you out. Often event space managers have a network of service providers that you can tap to help their client’s events.
When can we have access to the venue?
The allotted time of most event spaces significantly varies. Some allow you to come in early to set up your decorations and have everything ready hours before your event, while others have a set time allotment that you should follow. Better clear this out with the venue managers to set the right expectations.
Is the venue exclusively for the attendees only?
Of course, nobody wants gate crashers at their event, but this might be inevitable if you rent a non-exclusive venue. Suppose the event is in an open and public space. In that case, there’s a huge possibility that curious eyes might ogle and bother your guests. Security is a must at any event space—it’s also an extensive topic that we’ll discuss in another post.
Are there any other rules I need to know?
Of course, event space rentals follow different rules and regulations. You might want to check what these are. Ask for a general idea of how they’ll work with you. Usually, it’s good to ask about the following as well:
- • Can I bring in decorations? Is there any rule about taping decors on walls?
- • Do you have corkage fees on food and drink items? If so, how much?
- • What about noise regulations and quiet times?
- • Is there any fee if we need to extend past the booking time? If so, how much?
- • What about security? Do you have in-house security?
- • Is there a limit when it comes to using the venue’s amenities?
- • Who will be in charge of the cleaning and maintenance for the aftercare?
Planning is definitely the biggest task when hosting an event. As you can see, asking the right questions helps outline your priorities. It also ensures that you have a successful and stress-free event.
Need a venue for your upcoming event in San Francisco? let Dynamico Space help you out! We offer event space rentals for just about any event, from virtual seminars, international forums, hackathons, workshops, lifestyle functions, and more